Friday, July 13, 2007

Carrying Jackie's Torch by Steve Jacobson

According to Steve Jacobson in Carrying Jackie's Torch, the story of integrating major league baseball did not end with Jackie Robinson surviving his first year with the Brooklyn Dodgers. For the next dozen years an unpublicized quota kept the number of black players down , and the men who followed the Dodger second baseman faced entrenched discrimination. In some cities, not all in the South, they had to eat in kitchens while their white teammates ate in dining rooms. They were restricted to certain cars of trains. They were not allowed into many of the team hotels. Abuse from the bigots in the stands and hate mail dogged them whenever they excelled.

In separate chapters in Carrying Jackie's Torch, Jacobson tells the stories of eighteen players and Emmett Ashford, the first black umpire in the major leagues. Several of the players are lesser known, but many are stars, like Ernie Banks, Frank Robinson, Bob Gibson, and Henry Aaron. The saddest of the tales are those of Charlie Murray, who found the discrimination in the minor leagues unbearable, and Curt Flood, who challenged the baseball reserve clause that kept players enslaved to their teams.

Jacobson says that he wants current players, with their big salaries and many perks, to read about these men who made modern baseball possible. He also argues that integration of baseball and other sports was essential to the success of the civil right movement. Public and school libraries should own this book.

Jacobson, Steve. Carrying Jackie's Torch: The Players Who Integrated Baseball - and America. Lawrence Hill Books, 2007. ISBN 1556526393

15 comments:

Maggie said...

Sounds like a good one, Rick! I'll be ordering it when I get back to work. :)

Katya said...

Love the look of your blog. Could you tell me how to post pictures on one's blogsite? (mail to kkboyd@spamcop.net) thanks!

Katya said...

P.S. I tried the blogger instructions many times to no avail.

disgruntled world citizen said...

sweet another librarian blog! i am almost done with my mls. i look forward to reading this blog.

take care.

Carrie said...

Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks are at the top of my hero list. Unfortunately the prejudices are still alive and thriving...but the times are changing.

Another good book "Their Eyes Were Watching God" by Zora Neale Hurston. This is a classic in black literature.

Kel said...

You have a good blog here, please check out mine and leave me a comment.

http://kelsblogtales.blogspot.com/

theremingtonblog.com said...

Dude, nice blog. You're a good writer.

R2K said...

: )

angusss said...

Rick,
I stumbled upon your blog on the main page, and I was fascinated. I was just wondering if you've read a book called 'Stasiland', written by Anna Funder - I actually wrote a blog about it not so long ago, funnily enough named 'Stasiland'. I would really recommend giving this book a read, or at least having a quick glance at it. I'm not much of a reader, but this book is fascinating.

I like your blog, and I'm sure I'll now keep reading

Angus

Michelle said...

This sounds like an awesome book! It's going on my wish list! Like the blog and will come back to visit!

patagoniacommunity said...

Your entry hit me on a couple of levels. Number one, I'm a high school teacher but spent the first part of summer school helping out in the school library. I have a renewed appreciation for the magic of books and the role of the library. Second, I am a UCLA alumnus and Mr. Robinson's attendance and graduation from UCLA have always been a source of pride for Bruins past and present. Thanks for your entry.

Eva G. said...

Great blog - I'll have to put this title on my reading list.

MsRose said...

I am visiting your blog for the first time. I am new to the blog world. I just wanted to tell you how pleasing it is to see someone with a passion to share knowledge! If your site is still here in a few years, my children will be using it for researching ideas and information. Thank You!

LeeAndrew said...

Sounds like a good book, thanks for the recommendation. I'll have to check it out and look through your blog for some others too.

Film Scholar said...

The book looks excellent. Thanks for the review. I'm going to check it out.